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Kris Daratha Awarded Grant for Community Project
posted by: Cindy Omlin | December 07, 2016, 05:00 PM   

Congratulations to Kris Daratha, NWPE member and winner of a $500 NWPE grant to supplement Waterville High School's science program. With the help of a STEM grant last year, he and his students entered a national competition for design and implementation of solar heated sidewalks. They were able to create a prototype and three solar panels. The NWPE grant will help them improve the prototype and unleash five portable, heated sidewalks around Waterville, WA, in order to keep the community safe during harsh winters.  Mr. Daratha’s project is reusable, will continue year after year, and is a great way students will experience how STEM can better their community.

kris daratha grant pic“The purpose of the grant is to use STEM to solve the massive local problem of ice buildup on the sidewalks around our community,” states Mr. Daratha.  “The costs of this project include wiring, solar cells, fiberglass resin and cloth. This project has already been started, but needs additional funding to improve the project.”

All of Mr. Daratha’s science classes will be involved in researching and building the heated sidewalks. In addition, every student K-12 will benefit because they will provide safe passage for every student to come to school.   To maximize the benefit, the sidewalks will be placed in front of the busiest areas of town to help the most people.

According to Mr. Daratha raising the professionalism of educators will be best accomplished if teachers conduct research just as college professors often do. “Using data and first hand research will spark innovation and professionalism in our K-12 system.”

Mr. Daratha appreciates that NWPE gives him a choice for professional protection and support.  “I joined NWPE for the legal protection and believe that the best thing for the consumer (teachers) is multiple choices of where to get their insurance.”

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